Employers: Beware Black Friday

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29 Nov 2016

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Black Friday. Just the two mere words can whip your average bargain lover into a wide-eyed frenzy. The renowned discount day, this year falling on 25 November, often promises better deals than any other day, and significant discounts on a range of items.

But for those of you who are running a business, what are the main areas to keep in mind when managing your workforce?

Shopping during working time

As an employer, you should already operate a policy which sets out the guidelines for employees’ use of the internet. But on Black Friday, the cut prices can easily tempt your staff to shop online more than normal, or more than you would normally like them to. To prevent this, be prepared. Acknowledge that Black Friday is fast approaching, and ensure that you clearly communicate what you are willing to allow for your employees. Maybe their lunch break is the best time for scouring the best deals on the day, or you could take a more flexible approach and allow employees to have a quick browse during the day. Whatever you decide, make sure all of your employees are aware of the boundaries you’re setting.

If you offer discounts or flash sales

Generally, your employees should already be aware of the flexibility (or lack of) they have when negotiating your prices. As part of human nature, some will always try to push for that further £5 off - and even more so on Black Friday - so keep this in mind on the biggest discount day of the year. You may choose to offer a further discount on this day, or you may choose to continue as you would any other day. Whatever you do is your call, so long as your employees know that too.

Late lunch breaks

If your employees are within travelling distance of a shopping outlet likely to participate in the Black Friday hype, be mindful of the extra time shopping is likely to take if they venture out on their lunch. Longer queues, perhaps more brawls, and a packed car park are all factors guaranteed to increase the likelihood of your employees being late. You could offer them a late lunch to get round this, or work through their lunch and start of finish earlier. Occasionally lateness genuinely cannot be helped, but you should ensure that your employees take on board the extra time needed, and manage their time effectively - especially on this date.

Internet security: online transactions

While individuals should take ultimate responsibility for inputting their bank details online, as an employer, you must also exercise due diligence when it comes to internet security for your company. Before Black Friday, it is worth double checking and making sure that robust firewall systems are in place, and if necessary, consult with your IT team to ensure your systems are adequately protected.

Cyber Monday

Black Friday isn’t normally the only day to deliver on the discount front. Although it derives from the United States originally, nowadays Cyber Monday is also anticipated in the UK. Cyber Monday will fall on 28 November this year. While it’s normally a diluted version of Black Friday, you should be also be mindful of and plan ahead for this follow-on date

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